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Satin Pajamas, Spanking, And Why She Kept The Money: Stormy Daniels At Trump Trial

Wearing a black outfit and black glasses, Daniels told the court she grew annoyed by Trump's frequent interruptions and asked him: "Are you always this arrogant and pompous?"
Stormy Daniels at Trump trial
File Photo of Stormy Daniels at an event.

NEW YORK: Porn star Stormy Daniels testified at Donald Trump’s criminal trial on Tuesday that she was eager to collect on a $130,000 deal that bought her silence about their 2006 encounter before the 2016 presidential election, because she was worried he would not pay her if he won.

In riveting testimony on Day 13 of the hush money trial, Daniels told a New York jury she had sex with Trump in 2006 but was determined to keep the incident private after being threatened in a parking lot in 2011.

She testified she changed her mind during Trump’s 2016 presidential bid when he faced multiple accusations of sexual misbehaviour.

“My motivation wasn’t money, it was to get the story out,” she said.

Daniels, 45, spoke in detail about the encounter, which ultimately led to the first criminal trial of a former U.S. president. Trump has pleaded not guilty to charges of falsifying business records to cover up the hush-money payment to Daniels.

Questioned by Trump’s lawyer, Daniels said she hates Trump and hopes he goes to jail if found guilty.

Daniels’ testimony prompted Trump’s legal team to ask for a mistrial, arguing that her account included details, such as the fact that Trump did not wear a condom, “inflamed” the jury and were irrelevant to the case.

Justice Juan Merchan denied the request.

Trump, 77, did not react as he watched her testimony from the witness stand.

The alleged encounter took place while Trump was married to his current wife, Melania. Trump denies any sexual encounter with Daniels. His legal team suggested that Daniels made up the story, as she was angling for a spot on The Apprentice, a popular reality TV show then hosted by Trump, a New York real estate mogul.

In her testimony, Daniels confirmed that she hoped he would cast her on the show following their encounter.

Daniels said Trump made sexual advances after inviting her to his hotel suite at a celebrity golf tournament in Lake Tahoe, Nevada. She said he told her “this is the only way you’re getting out of the trailer park.”

She said she “blacked out” after Trump prevented her from leaving the room, though she consumed no drugs or alcohol. And woke up on the bed with her clothes off.

“I was staring at the ceiling and didn’t know how I got there, I was trying to think about anything other than what was happening there,” Daniels testified as she described having sex with Trump.

Daniels, whose real name is Stephanie Clifford, said she did not tell Trump to stop. “I didn’t say anything at all,” and left the hotel room quickly afterward, she said.

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Daniels testified Trump’s bodyguard had asked her to join Trump for dinner. “F no,” Daniels said she responded.

But she said she changed her mind after a publicist convinced her the dinner could make a great story. When she arrived at his hotel suite, Trump greeted her wearing only satin pajamas.

“I said, ‘Does Hugh Hefner know you stole his pajamas?'” Daniels recalled saying, referring to Playboy impresario Hugh Hefner. She told Trump to change, and he politely obliged, she said.

Wearing a black outfit and black glasses, Daniels said she grew annoyed by Trump’s frequent interruptions and asked him: “Are you always this arrogant and pompous?”

She said Trump dared her to spank him, and she obliged.

“That’s bullshit,” Trump appeared to say as he watched from the defendant’s table.

Trump passed a note to his defence lawyer on Tuesday and sometimes appeared to close his eyes while listening to her testimony.

After the break, Justice Juan Merchan told prosecutors to pull back on details of the encounter. “The degree of detail that we’re going into is just unnecessary,” he said.

Merchan had previously ruled that Daniels would be allowed to tell jurors that she had sex with Trump, over the objections of Trump’s legal team.

Prosecutor Susan Hoffinger said the testimony was needed to complete the story and establish Daniels’ credibility. “In terms of the sexual act, it will be just very basic. It’s not going to involve descriptions of genitalia or anything of that nature,” Hoffinger said.

Trump, running again for president in the November 5 election, has pleaded not guilty to 34 felony counts of falsifying business records.

Prosecutors have shown the former president’s signature was on payments at the heart of the case. They say Trump falsely labelled payments to his lawyer Michael Cohen in 2017 as legal expenses, when they actually were reimbursements for the $130,000 hush-money payment, which Cohen had made to Daniels.

Prosecutors say that amounts to an illegal scheme to influence the 2016 election by buying the silence of people with potentially damaging information.

Daniels has been at the receiving end of some of Trump’s vitriolic attacks on social media.
Merchan, who is hearing the case, has said some of those posts violated a gag order restricting Trump from speaking about witnesses, jurors, and others involved in the case if those statements are meant to influence the proceedings.

Trump has been fined $10,000 so far for violating a gag order that prevents him from talking about witnesses. Merchan has warned Trump could be jailed if he keeps up his attacks.

Trump has called the gag order a violation of his free speech rights and says the trial is an attempt to hobble his attempt to win back the White House from Democratic President Joe Biden.

The case is widely seen as less consequential than three other criminal prosecutions Trump faces, but it is the only one certain to go to trial before the election. The other cases charge Trump with trying to overturn his 2020 presidential defeat and mishandling classified documents after leaving office. Trump has pleaded not guilty to all three.